Welcome to the National Institute of Health and Care Research Clinical Research Network (NIHR CRN) Specialty Cluster. The CRN Specialty Cluster is part of the CRN Coordinating Centre (CRNCC). Led by our Medical Director, Professor Nick Lemoine, we provide clinical academic leadership for the Clinical Research Network at a national level. We are one of five National Specialty Clusters hosted by Higher Education Institution members of the Clinical Research Network Alliance, as listed below:
- Imperial College London Cluster A
Cardiovascular disease; Diabetes; Gastroenterology; Hepatology; Metabolic and Endocrine disorders; Renal disorders; Respiratory disorders; Stroke.
- King's College London Cluster C
Anaesthesia, peri-operative medicine and pain management; Critical Care; Health Services Research; Trauma and Emergency Care; Primary Care; Public Health; Dermatology; Mental health; Social Care.
- University of Liverpool Cluster D
Children; Haematology; Infection; Musculoskeletal disorders; Ophthalmology; Reproductive health and childbirth.
- University of Leeds Clusters E & F
Cluster E:Ageing; Dementias and neurodegeneration (DeNDRoN); Ear, Nose and Throat; Genetics; Neurological disorders.
Cluster F: Cancer; Oral and Dental Health; Surgery.
What we do
The CRN Specialty Cluster provides oversight of the need for and capacity for clinical research, working with those involved with portfolio development to stimulate and direct the portfolio for the benefit of patients, people who use social care services, carers and the NHS. Our broad remit is summarised below:
- To provide leadership and support to National Specialty Leads, their National Specialty Groups and other national research communities of practice to help continuously improve research portfolio volume, balance and performance.
- To play a key role in understanding "how best to deliver" health and care research in the NHS and other health and care settings for each Specialty and ensure this understanding feeds into CRN processes and practices at all levels, providing expert intelligence and advice to the CRN Research Delivery Directorate
- To keep up to date knowledge of the broader research environment and translate changes into CRN strategy to ensure we remain at the forefront of specialty research internationally.
- To act as an ambassador promoting the NIHR CRN to customers and stakeholders. To build effective relationships with decision-makers in the public sector, charity, commercial funding organisations, Biomedical Research Centres/Units and other components of the NIHR, demonstrating scientific leadership to develop pull-through models for the research pipeline.
- Through the NIHR CRN National Specialty Leads and the Local CRN staff, engage effectively with health and care professionals in a variety of settings, to maximise the reach, impact and delivery of the CRN and its initiatives.
For further information about the NIHR CRN National Specialty Groups included in our Cluster, please follow website links below:
NIHR CRN National Specialty Groups
Specialty and Pan-NIHR Initiatives
We work with specialty stakeholders and colleagues across the NIHR to deliver a number of specialty and pan-NIHR initiatives. These include the formation of an NIHR Imaging Group, national coordination of NIHR ENRICH and development of a CRN HSR Toolkit.
NIHR Imaging Group
The overarching aim of the NIHR Imaging Group is to accelerate the development, evaluation and clinical translation of novel imaging science by supporting the development of the imaging research workforce; developing new and stronger partnerships with industry; working with key national partners, including patients and the public; and streamlining processes required to set up and deliver imaging studies.
The NIHR Imaging Group is led by Professor Stuart Taylor and consists of three working groups (workforce, science and research delivery) which are overseen by the steering group.